OK. We'll say this one more time. Are all you marketers listening? Good. There's a big difference between a teaser campaign and one that maliciously hides it's purpose for long periods of time. And, on top of that, denies its true mission when it's found out. What the hell are we talking about? Take, for example, the teaser billboard. It's usually some irreverent play on words and witty imagery that's then reveled to be part of a larger campaign a couple weeks later. Now take fake blogs. You've heard of them. Edelman knows all about them. They are the things marketers seem to think are the holy grail of this new social media thing. Let's get down with our customers. Let's "join the conversation." Trouble is, a fake blog - one that pretends (badly) to be all hip hop on our ass - is like an idiot that shows up at a black tie event wearing American Eagle cargo shorts and a t-shirt. The natural reaction to that is, "Who the fuck is that idiot?"
Deft Creative Ltd.'s, awkwardly sloganed "Dexterous of hand and inventive of mind," demonstrates neither dexterity (though they try) nor inventiveness (no effort here) with this dull leaping-Rudolph ski game. The object is to beat the furthest leap and we're ensured by the agency guy that "All scores on the score board ARE beatable." Glad he made the effort to bang that in because otherwise we were going to lose sleep over it.
The game is tricky in that it involves holding down your left mouse button and releasing when you feel Rudolph has built enough momentum. Then you let loose and do it all over again. It's a cross between the high school pole jump and a Friday night spent half-heartedly masturbating. - Contributed by Angela Natividad
Well, so much for those Lego ads. And so much for their creators. Today, the creators of the ads, Black Wu and Darren Cheung have acknowledged the ads are, in fact, fake, and that they were created as a "personal trial to challenge creativity." Commenting on the creation of these ads, they state, "We got so carried away that we came out with the stupidest idea that upset a broad audience. This was obviously done without the knowledge of any of the Saatchi & Saatchi managers."
Another letter from Saatchi & Saatchi Guangzhou China Head of Admin Ms. Cherry Yang clarifies the ads did not officially emanate from Saatchi, no one inside the organization was aware of their existence and that Wu and Cheung "have been dismissed today as their irresponsible personal behavior have severely affected our company's professional image." Well, there you have it. Pair creates spec ads to gain notoriety. Stupidly attaches employer's name to ads. Piss off employer. Get fired.
Less than one day after a set of Lego ads appeared out of Saatchi & Saatchi China which bluntly belittled major world catastrophes, a video entitled Advertising Crimes Against Humanity has appeared on YouTube that doesn't paint a pretty picture for Lego or Saatchi. The video shows each of the three ads in the series and zooms in on the Lego logo. At the end, Saatchi's China phone number is provided and viewers are urged to direct their concerns to the ad's creators whose name are provided. We've placed a call but it's the middle of the night over there and no one answered.
We're hoping these are fake ads. If not, Lego may find itself in a bit of a PR fiasco.
While many might look at these ads(1, 2, 3), which have been out for a while we believe, and call them a horrific glorification of unfortunate word events. Other might say, "Hey, shit happens. Get over it. It's just an ad campaign." Of note, these ads were created in China by Saatchi & Saatchi according to Ads of the World and their world view is quite different than ours. Though, the fact they are Chinese ads written in English always causes one to wonder whether they are actually real or leaked fakes. If someone at Saatchi wants to confirm or deny their existence, we're all ears. If they are real, we think they step over the line just a wee bit.
Nodding to that covert blog thing that didn't go so well, the American Cancer Society visibly sponsors The Quitter, a blog written by a generic representative (they hope) for smokers at large.
We like a good message but the blog tries so hard it's almost farce. With terminology like "Ya know," "I'm really craving a cig" and "this ain't their first rodeo," we couldn't help looking around and wondering, Are they serious? Or are they fucking joking? The video blog nailed it in: they are really trying to do this with a straight face. In consternation we left for a smoke break.
Yes, we know smoking is marketed as cool but really isn't. We have to hand it to Big Tobacco for doing a better job at hawking cool than the ACS, who visibly struggle with this whole "get down with our peeps" thing. - Contributed by Angela Natividad
Adrants reader Dresden directs our attention to the super-classy Draft FCB congrats ad to all the winners from last summer's Cannes ad festival.
Dresden wryly notes, "Perhaps they should be the first to receive the 'Neal French Award' for non-creative, derivative, tacky work trying to pass as advertising..."
Ooh, that burns going down. Bottoms up to Draft. - Contributed by Angela Natividad
PETA recently launched PETA Kids in an attempt to make the volatile group more kid-friendly. The site is loaded with fun little ways to propagandize the usual message, like stencils to decorate the nearest public loo with images of animals begging "love me" - yes, like a psychotic ex.
PETA is also promoting Fast Food Nation and Happy Feet, which happens to be in bed with Tamiflu, which, by the way, is now linked to sometimes fatal but generally psychotic behavior among kids.
Clearly PETA has not done its homework about children the way it has with pigs, puppies and penguins. Want to cozy up to kids? Liaise with companies that aren't already liaising with companies that happen to be compelling your target demographic to fling themselves off condo balconies. Isn't that, like, common knowledge? - Contributed by Angela Natividad
Inspired by the video of a UCLA student getting repeatedly tased by cops in the school library, which was too sadistic even for us, Ad Freak decided to research how taser companies hawk their wares. What they found was this video depicting Taser execs zapping the shit out of each other to demonstrate a taser's non-lethal but efficiently trauma-inducing capacity. "If only your boss showed this kind of commitment," Ad Freak observes.
We're guessing university cops don't test tasers on themselves before dashing out the door with them in the morning. If they did, they might discover it doesn't quite tickle - though we might consider getting tased ourselves if it means a mind-blowing settlement from UCLA and watching some dumbasses get fired. - Contributed by Angela Natividad
This November 27 and 29 Fox airs the OJ-sponsored special, OJ Simpson: If I Did It, Here's How It Happened. We'll tune in for the same reason you'd stop in traffic to watch a grotesque accident or drug bust - how can you not?
In two hours OJ gets to let his imagination run wild with Judith Regan (who's in charge of his book deal) over how he would have done Nicole and Ron in if - that is, if - he actually committed the murders we all know and believe our smiling football hero didn't commit.
"This is [...] the definitive last chapter in the Trial of the Century," says Mike Darnell, who's Fox's executive VP of alternative programming. Alternative. Yeah, that's a handy label.
Steve puts it most aptly: "Nothing like admitting guilt without admitting while admitting you're not admitting what you already did!" And if you can follow that sentence, maybe you should have been in court trying to piece Cochran out. - Contributed by Angela Natividad